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The Earth's weather patterns have begun to change dramatically... drastic decline in food production... most devastating outbreak of tornadoes ever recorded, 148 twisters... fundamental changes in the world's weather... economic and social adjustments on a worldwide scale... The longer the planners delay, the more difficult will they find it to cope...
Oh, sorry... I was just reading an article from Newsweek - from 1975. Entitled "The Cooling World," it warned of the dire consequences of "Global Cooling" - unless political action was brought about immediately.
The furor about global warming has undoubtedly reached a crescendo in the past few years. This coincides with two convenient reasons for interest pushing the agenda: America and George W. Bush. Radical proponents of the Kyoto Protocol barely mask their seething resentment of American superiority; their hatred for capitalism; their disdain for individual freedom; and their complete delusion about the abilities of renewable energy sources.
Case in point, a recent edition of the Independent. It demanded that the British government, "tackle gas-guzzlers, [taxing them by] more than 1,000 per vehicle... insist on a health warning on the side: 'This Vehicle Damages The Environment'... Curb the growth of cheap flights... Have a late-night talk with George Bush.... the president is denying the evidence."
The US, we are repeatedly told, produces 20 percent of the world's CO2 emissions, while containing only 5% of the world's population.
THE US actually emits 1% of the world's man-made CO2. This is because human industry accounts for less than 5% of global CO2 emissions - nature does the rest. And do we really need to debate a world without the American economy, which, like Atlas, carries it on his shoulders?
What Kyoto demands is that the US loses about one-third of its jobs - that is what would result were the US to reduce its CO2 emission to below 1990 levels (the US economy is over one-and-a-half times the size it was in 1990). Kyoto was struck down by the US Senate in 1997, 95-0, almost four years before Bush entered the White House.
Back to the stats. The 20th century saw average increase in temperatures - before the 1940s - then a tapering. To find the greatest rise in temperature coming before the biggest exponential rise in CO2 levels in the last century confounds the models in which scientists have placed so much faith.
Not only this, but the UN Report on Climate Change in 2001 exposed its own methodological flaws, when proving that last century was the hottest of the millennium. It gauged temperatures for the 11th through 19th centuries by tree-ring samples (from the northern hemisphere only, I might add), and the 20th by thermometer records. Hardly failsafe.
Temperature readings especially vary at ground level, sometimes by as much as 10 degrees. To get more consistency, we must measure the atmosphere. Here, there has been a cooling trend in the lower eight km. of the atmosphere. This has been detected by weather balloons, and independently confirmed by NASA's orbiting satellites. David Holcberg at the Ayn Rand Institute explains that, "this data, gathered from all over the globe, through precise microwave and radio measurements, shows an average drop of 0.19 F in air temperature since 1979. The National Academy of Sciences finds this cooling trend, which conflicts with the global warming hypothesis, 'so pronounced as to be difficult to explain.'"
THE CATO institute's Richard S. Lindzen, a professor of meteorology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, cites a Gallup poll of climate scientists from the American Meteorological Society and in the American Geophysical Union. Not only did 49% believe that there has been no "identifiable man-caused warming to date," but only 18% thought some has occurred. "Among those actively involved in research and publishing frequently in peer-reviewed research journals, none believes that any man-caused global warming has been identified so far."
More recently, radicals used the tragedy following Hurricane Katrina to claim that the increase in severe weather in the past few years is a symptom of global warming. This completely ignored the Atlantic Meriodonal Oscillation, where cyclical temperature variations in the Atlantic affect the surrounding weather.
But no global warming discussion would be complete without reference to Danish statistician Bjorn Lomborg. The Danish Committee on Scientific Dishonesty (DCSD) viciously attacked him, and his contranian book, Skeptical Environmentalist. In 2003, using the DCSD's opinion, Britain's Guardian criticized Lomborg's "scientific dishonesty," describing his book as "not comprehending science." The problem is, DCSD was repudiated by the Danish Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation, which criticized DCSD's attack on Lomborg as being "completely void of argumentation."
So, here are a few things to consider:
Dr. Fred Singer, professor of environmental sciences and former director of the National Weather Satellite Service, has pointed out that solar activity greatly affects the Earth's climate.
British botanist and ecologist, David Bellamy, claims that, "the main greenhouse gas - the one that has the most direct effect on land temperature - is water vapor, 99% of which is entirely natural."
Finally, if the worst comes to the worst, as Dr. Frederick Seitz, former president of the National Academy of Sciences states, a warming of the earth would actually be beneficial to mankind and to life in general. "Warmer weather extends growing seasons and generally improves the habitability of colder regions," as well as boosting the growth of crops and forests, which feed on this gas.
And what do forests produce?
The writer is a British freelancer.